You’re thinking how on earth do Thee Oh Sees manage to put so many new records out, right? Well, in the case of this one it’s a reissue. Grave Blockers was originally released in 2006 and sees John Dwyer et al in a gentler mood, playing some psych-folk rather than the unhinged garage rock to which we’ve become accustomed.
Limited Vinyl LP £17.75 CF109X
Limited edition coloured vinyl reissue LP on Castle Face.
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- Coloured vinyl
- Limited edition
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CD £10.99 CF109CD
Reissue CD EP on Castle Face.
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Vinyl LP £18.99 CF109LP
Black vinyl reissue EP on Castle Face.
Band of many incarnations and many names (seriously, OCs, Oh Sees, Orange County Sound?) The Ohsees released the Grave Blockers EP way back in '06. I went into this anticipating something mega-heavy, a blackened, road-worn, blistering psych-rock opus, because of how early it was released in the band's career and especially considering the title. However, I was proved completely wrong, as is wont to happen when I'm sure about how a record is going to sound. What the Grave Blockers EP is is a melodic, thoughtful collection of lo-fi psychy folk songs. I was massively surprised and massively enjoyed it.
Grave Blockers is whimsical (y'all know how much I like whimsy), weird, and woozy. The recordings are beautifully lo-fi, full of hissing and mic pops, and even features the sound of seagulls on one track. Main man and Oh Sees mogul John Dwyer seems quiet, meditative, even anxious. He sounds like he's hunched over the microphone, barely squeezing the notes out. This EP is a little indulgent but all the better for it, with lots of finger-picked guitars taking up whole songs. The last third of the EP is even features some really nice experimental pieces. There are sine wave drones, thumping, simplistic drum machines, and those bloody seagulls again.
In short, this EP is a beguiling work which is a far-cry from most other Oh Sees projects. I encourage you to listen to it.
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